Read the story here. Advertise at Before It's News here.
Profile image
By CNA Daily News - Europe (Reporter)
Contributor profile | More stories
Story Views
Last hour:
Last 24 hours:

Appeals court considers university officials’ personal liability for religious discrimination 

% of readers think this story is Fact. Add your two cents.

CNA Staff, Jan 14, 2021 / 12:56 am (CNA).- A federal appeals court heard arguments on Wednesday on whether public university officials can be held personally liable for religious discrimination.

The Eighth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments on Wednesday in InterVarsity Christian Fellowship v. University of Iowa, the case of a Christian group kicked off the school’s campus because of its faith-based policy requiring leaders to be Christian.

“This is a case of deliberate, express, religious viewpoint discrimination,” stated Daniel Blomberg, senior counsel at Becket who is representing InterVarsity Christian Fellowship before the Eighth Circuit Court.

In the case, a federal district court had held that University of Iowa officials were personally liable for unlawful removal of several faith-based groups from campus for purportedly violating the school’s nondiscrimination policy.

According to the university, InterVarsity Christian Fellowship and other religious groups had violated the policy because they required leaders to abide by the stated religious beliefs of the groups.
In 2018, InterVarsity Christian was notified by the university that its standards—that leaders be Christians—violated the school’s nondiscrimination policy. In July of that year, InterVarsity and 38 other student organizations including Sikh, Muslim, and Christian groups were deregistered for similar religious requirements of their leaders.

In response to a lawsuit filed by InterVarsity Christian, the university temporarily reinstated the religious student groups. Later in 2019, a federal district court ruled that the university had violated First Amendment rights of the groups, and that university officials were personally liable. The university then appealed the case to the Eighth Circuit.

The school’s stated reason for the de-registration of the groups was religious, and it contrasts with its lack of enforcement against other secular groups, Blomberg told federal judges on Wednesday

“The primary issue is that the university chose to target religious beliefs as such, and did it while exempting dozens and dozens of other student organizations, and its own programs, from the exact same policy,” he said.

In a written statement on Wednesday, Blomberg said that “[u]niversity officials who target individuals or groups based on religion must be held accountable for their actions.”

Attorneys for the university argued on Wednesday that the university was making “good faith” efforts to comply with a previous court order instructing them to change their enforcement of the nondiscrimination policy; further, the actions by university officials were shielded from qualified immunity, they argued.

The case is similar to that heard by the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday, Uzuegbunam v. Preczewski.

In that case, attorneys for two students at Georgia Gwinnett College argued before the court that school officials should be personally liable for the school’s policy restricting where and when they could evangelize fellow students on campus, and for security guards temporarily stopping them from evangelizing.


Before It’s News® is a community of individuals who report on what’s going on around them, from all around the world.

Anyone can join.
Anyone can contribute.
Anyone can become informed about their world.

"United We Stand" Click Here To Create Your Personal Citizen Journalist Account Today, Be Sure To Invite Your Friends.

Please Help Support BeforeitsNews by trying our Natural Health Products below!

Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at M - F 9am to 5pm EST

Order by Phone at 888-809-8385 or online at M - F 9am to 5pm EST

Humic & Fulvic Trace Minerals Complex - Nature's most important supplement! Vivid Dreams again!

HNEX HydroNano EXtracellular Water - Improve immune system health and reduce inflammation

Ultimate Clinical Potency Curcumin - Natural pain relief, reduce inflammation and so much more.

MitoCopper - Bioavailable Copper destroys pathogens and gives you more energy. (See Blood Video)
Oxy Powder - Natural Colon Cleanser!  Cleans out toxic buildup with oxygen! 
Nascent Iodine - Promotes detoxification, mental focus and thyroid health.
Smart Meter Cover -  Reduces Smart Meter radiation by 96%!  (See Video)

Immusist Beverage Concentrate - Proprietary blend, formulated to reduce inflammation while hydrating and oxygenating the cells.

Report abuse


Your Comments
Question   Razz  Sad   Evil  Exclaim  Smile  Redface  Biggrin  Surprised  Eek   Confused   Cool  LOL   Mad   Twisted  Rolleyes   Wink  Idea  Arrow  Neutral  Cry   Mr. Green

Load more ...




Email this story
Email this story

If you really want to ban this commenter, please write down the reason:

If you really want to disable all recommended stories, click on OK button. After that, you will be redirect to your options page.